The White House / Flickr trump pence and ryan clapping...
The White House / Flickr

Many people following politics know that income inequality is growing increasingly worse. A new report from Oxfam International shows that the situation may be way more dire than many thought. According to a new report titled “Reward work, not wealth,” the 42 richest people in the world have as much wealth as the 3.7 billion poorest combined.

Last year saw the biggest increase in billionaires in history, one more every two days. This huge increase could have ended global extreme poverty seven times over. 82% of all wealth created in the last year went to the top 1%, and nothing went to the bottom 50%.

Dangerous, poorly paid work for the many is supporting extreme wealth for the few. Women are in the worst work, and almost all the super-rich are men. Governments must create a more equal society by prioritizing ordinary workers and small-scale food producers instead of the rich and powerful.

The Guardian reports on the study’s findings, which states that a lucky few are quickly scaling the ranks of wealth while the neediest are left behind.

In a report published on Monday to coincide with the gathering of some of the world’s richest people at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Oxfam said billionaires had been created at a record rate of one every two days over the past 12 months, at a time when the bottom 50% of the world’s population had seen no increase in wealth. It added that 82% of the global wealth generated in 2017 went to the most wealthy 1%.

The charity said it was “unacceptable and unsustainable” for a tiny minority to accumulate so much wealth while hundreds of millions of people struggled on poverty pay. It called on world leaders to turn rhetoric about inequality into policies to tackle tax evasion and boost the pay of workers.

The full in-depth report is worth a read because it breaks down how the wealthy have really created and gamed the system in their favor while the vast majority suffers. 2017 alone saw an increase of $762 billion in wealth, which is enough money to end extreme poverty—seven times over. With the passing of the #GOPTaxScam, the discrepancy in the United States will only get worse while innocent Americans (and people around the world) will needlessly suffer thanks to the wealthy’s greed.

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This is a Creative Commons article. The original version of this article appeared here.

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